From Houston Public Media:
Nearly one out of three Texans can claim Hispanic heritage, and while not all vote, those that do can sway elections. As a part of a Texas Newsroom statewide project, Houston Public Media spoke with Latino voters across Harris County about their concerns as the midterm elections approached.
Hispanic residents make up roughly a quarter of Harris County’s registered voters. Texas as a whole has about the same percentage, which means both in the Houston area and statewide, it pays for candidates to listen to Latino voters. Common threads emerged in conversations with 15 Hispanic residents from neighborhoods as distant as Katy and Baytown. Carmelo Salgado spoke on his way to a baseball game at Minute Maid Park, as the Astros were finishing up their winning season.
“In these next elections, the priority for me is the economy, what they propose to improve the economy, and, more than anything else, security. We are living very difficult times in terms of security, especially in schools, so those are my priorities,” Salgado said.
The economy, particularly the rising cost of living, was the top concern among most of those residents interviewed, followed by education and school safety. That tracked closely with the findings of a recent poll by Univision, as well as with those of political scientists who study Hispanic voting patterns.
Jeronimo Cortina, an associate professor of political science at the University of Houston, said the top concern of most Latino voters are “the normal issues that you would expect amongst the electorate, and those issues are related to, you know inflation, high prices, especially when you go to the supermarket (as well as) gas prices.”